Thinking about attending college isn’t usually the first thing on the minds of high school students. But the CU Succeed program works towards making sure it is on their radar. CU Succeed’s goal is to get Colorado high school students to aspire to attend college — hopefully they will choose the University of Colorado Denver.
For many years, CU Succeed has hosted orientation sessions for high school teachers about the gold and silver programs. But last year when they surveyed the teachers, organizers found out that most participants would prefer a conference instead of an orientation.
One teacher from Denver’s East High School noted, “It is really nice to learn something from a conference instead of just being told what we should do in an orientation.”
CU Succeed got its start 22 years ago when Danny Martinez (see photo above, Martinez on left with CLAS Dean Dan Howard) realized that high school students might be interested in earning college credit for classes instead of taking AP (Advanced Placement) courses. Since its introduction starting from one school in the Denver metro area, CU Succeed has expanded into 90 high schools across Colorado.
At the July 14 conference, Martinez was recognized with the first CU Succeed “Outstanding Service Award.” Because of Martinez’s work, the CU Succeed program has grown into a model for other colleges in Colorado and around the United States.
The College of Liberal Arts and Sciences donated $100,000 to the CU Succeed program so it is able to offer 75 individual scholarships of $1,500 each to high school students enrolled in CU Succeed. These recipients plan on attending the University of Colorado Denver in the fall.
This year’s conference had many breakout sessions for participants dealing with topics, including “Transitioning your student from high school to college,” “Cultural Diversity,” “How to increase your classroom engagement,” and “The difference between teaching a high school class and a college course.”